Wins over East Central and Braham earned the second-seeded Onamia Panthers a date with top-seeded Pine River-Backus scheduled for Oct. 29 at Aitkin High School in the semi-finals of the Section 5A volleyball tournament.
The second-seeded Onamia Panthers hosted the seventh-seeded East Central Eagles in the opening round of the Section 5A volleyball tournament on Oct. 24.
East Central entered the match ranked 182nd among the 188 Class A volleyball teams in the state with an overall record of 0-23, and Onamia was ranked 59th with a record of 16-9.
The Panthers had took little time in dispatching the Eagles, winning handily in three straight sets.
Among the statistical highlights of the match for the Panthers were 13 aces turned in by their servers, including eight off the hand of MaKayla Balder. Balder, Kailee Barnett, Lily Orazem and Krissy Dahl combined for 24 kills, and Balder led the team in set assists with 18.
East Central 12 7 12
Onamia 25 25 25
The second-seeded Onamia Panthers hosted the third-seeded Braham Bombers in the second round of the Section 5A volleyball tournament on Oct. 25.
Onamia, who had beaten Braham twice during the regular season, started the match in royal style, out-killing their guests 21-9 to take a commanding 2-0 lead.
But as convincing as the Panthers were in the first two sets, they were completely out of sync in game three and were on the ropes midway through game four before several bench players, including Kendra Newalis, Ashley Strang and Shayla Nayquonable, came to the rescue. Senior Krissy Dahl produced the winning kill to save the game from a fifth set.
Onamia finished the match with 50 kills compared to 25 by Braham. Lilly Orazem and Kailee Barnett accounted for 27 of Onamia’s kills.
Braham 14 15 25 22
Onamia 25 25 22 25